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home : features : science and nature September 1, 2014

Check Pool Filters For Asian Longhorned Beetle

DURHAM, N.H. -- UNH Cooperative Extension and the N.H. Division of Forests and Lands are asking New Hampshire residents with pools to check their filters regularly for Asian longhorned beetle (ALB). This invasive insect is a serious threat to our forests and trees.

While ALB hasn't reached New Hampshire yet, Karen Bennett, Extension forestry specialist with UNH Cooperative Extension, said, "We need many people looking for the Asian longhorned beetle so we can take steps to limit its spread, if it arrives."

ALB was found in trees in Worcester, Massachusetts, in 2008, but experts estimate it was in the trees for about 10 years before they found it. Some Worcester homeowners subsequently reported they collected ALB in their swimming pools for years prior to the 2008 identification.

Kyle Lombard, forest health specialist at the N.H. Division of Forests and Lands, said "Pools capture all types of insects in the filter system. We've learned this method is more effective than insect lures or other trapping systems available to entomologists, so we're asking folks to look at insects in their filters and take pictures of any beetles resembling invasive forest pests. We'll identify the insect from the picture. We first found the invasive brown marmorated stink bug in New Hampshire in a swimming pool. Finding non-native, invasive insects early is always the key to successful management."

If you find beetles in your swimming pool, you will need:

? A digital camera,

? An email address you actively use, and


? Computer skills to follow instructions to upload pictures to

Help us by looking at the debris from your swimming pools. Here are the steps you can take:

Step 1: From mid-July through the end of August. Whenever you clean your pool, look at the debris you collect in your filter and skimmers. Look for longhorned beetles.

Step 2: Use a fact sheet to compare collected insects to common insects. A good one can be found at

Step 3: Take a picture of any insect you think is a longhorned beetle. A good view of the insect's back is needed to properly identify it.

Step 4: Upload pictures to

Step 5: If you send us a picture, freeze the insect in a plastic-like container until we are able to respond to you, (about a week). We will either tell you to throw the insect out or give you instructions about mailing it, delivering it, or arranging for pick-up.

We will post interesting pictures and sightings online at

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